CRISIS AVERTED | Plane plummets with senior state officials on board
A Queensland Police jet carrying senior state government officials has been forced to make an emergency landing after a mid-air crisis during a flight from Brisbane to Townsville.
Police Minister Mark Ryan, Police Commissioner Ian Stewart, Corrective Services Commissioner Peter Martin, Queensland Fire and Emergency Services Commissioner Katarina Carroll, Maritime Safety Queensland head Captain Patrick Quirk and a government staffer were aboard the plane.
They were travelling to meet Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk at an Australia Day event when the Cessna suddenly plunged towards ground near Bundaberg.
4BC reporter Natasha Dean-Jones spoke to the Police Commissioner Mr Stewart this morning.
“He said they began hearing a few bangs and then smelt smoke.
“Then, suddenly, the plane began to plummet. He has described it as quite a frightening experience but he says they were in very safe hands.”
The pilots were forced to return the aircraft to the Government Air Wing in Brisbane at a low altitude and speed for an emergency landing, a government spokesman said.
“Commissioner Stewart immediately took charge, reassuring other passengers and directing them to follow emergency procedures as the pilots turned the plane around,” he told AAP.
“The plane took off at 5.50am and was met under emergency landing at the Government Air Wing by several fire appliances and representatives of Brisbane Airport Corporation just after 7am.”
Click PLAY below to hear Natasha’s report